Prosecutors Seek Death Penalty In Grisly Ft. Worth Murders

Jason Thornburg

(Fort Worth, TX) – When Ft. Worth Police discovered three bodies in a burning dumpster in September 2021, they said it was a “shocking and unsettling case. This week, the Tarrant County Criminal District Attorney’s Office announced they have filed paperwork seeking the death penalty for Jason Thornburg.

Thornburg, 41, was arrested last year on a charge of capital murder regarding the deaths of David Lueras, Lauren Phillips and Maricruz Mathis. Their dismembered bodies were found in a burning Fort Worth dumpster on September 22, 2021. According to Thornburg the murders of those individuals were “human sacrifices”. He said, his purpose in life was to serve God and help people. Thornburg confessed to the killings during interrogation.

Following his arrest, Sgt. Loughman of Fort Worth Police Department Homicide Unit said, “In my time in the homicide unit, we don’t have anything that resembles this. I couldn’t even go into the psyche of someone who is able to do this.”

“The decision on whether or not to seek the death penalty is a crucial decision this office makes,” Tarrant County Criminal District Attorney Sharen Wilson said. “The death penalty is reserved for the worst of the worst criminals.

“It is only fitting that we seek the death penalty in this case.”

Tarrant County Assistant Criminal District Attorneys Kim D’Avignon and Jim Hudson are prosecuting this case.

Thornburg faces additional, unrelated charges of murder and arson regarding the death of Mark Jewell, 61, on May 21, 2021.